When God sets out to do something, he always succeeds. His work is described with words like amazing, awesome, spectacular, and fantastic. David said, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork” (Psalm 19:1). I believe David chose the heavens as an example of God’s amazing work because nothing can be compared to it. It is far superior to anything else we can think of or imagine doing ourselves.
Next to God’s creation, David compared his law and says, “The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul” (Psalm 19:7). “The process called conversion or turning to God is in reality a re-turning or a turning back again to him from whom sin has separated us, but whose we are by virtue of creation, preservation and redemption” (7725). The word translated converting, shûwb (shoob) is also translated as repent and return. “The basic meaning of the verb is movement back to the point of departure” (7725).
In regards to the sin that has separated us from God, it is not always our sin, but sometimes the sin of others that causes us to turn away from God. The important thing is that there is a turning point, a time when you have consciously chosen to walk in the pathway of sin rather than righteousness. Even though we all sin and from a very young age know the difference between right and wrong, we do not necessarily follow a pathway of sin just because we have sinned. The turning point when we consciously decide to ignore the rules and follow our own desires is what separates us from God and makes it impossible for him to guide our footsteps from day to day.
When a person is converted, repentance causes him to want to get back on the pathway of righteousness. David said about converting the soul that “The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes” (Psalm 19:8).
Once conversion has taken place, it is possible for God to guide our steps again, but he does not always guide us to the same destination he originally planned to. Along with conversion, there is often a new calling or vocation for one’s life such as when Saul of Tarsus became Paul the apostle. In the process of conversion, the turning point becomes the focal point around which everything centers from that time forward. What was once a point of departure becomes a launching pad for a new life in fellowship with God.
Inside every person is a longing, a secret desire that only God knows about. It is so personal and intimate that to discuss it with anyone would take so much courage that you would rather die than let it be known. As a shepherd, tending his father’s flock, David may have secretly desired to be king of Israel, but it wasn’t until Samuel showed up and anointed him that it became David’s destiny. When a person is converted, that which was a secret is brought into the light and made to happen. David said after the LORD made him king, “Thou hast given him his heart’s desire” (Psalm 21:2).